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Alternative forms[edit]


Literally “good mouth”.

Proper noun[edit]


  1. The now-extinct dialect of the Kurnai tribe of south-east Victoria, Australia.
  2. The now-extinct language encompassing the dialect of the Kurnai, as well as nearby dialects with which it was mutually intelligible.



  • 1907, R. H. Mathews, Language of the Birdhawal tribe, in Gippsland, Victoria
    The Birdhawal call their own dialect mŭk-dhang, but they distinguish the dialect of the Kurnai as gūnggala-dhang. The termination dhang in both instances means “mouth,” and is symbolical of speech. It may also be mentioned that the Kurnai call their own local dialect mŭk-dhang, and that of the Birdhawal kwai-dhang. Mŭk means good or great, and kwai signifies rough; I forget the meaning of gūnggala.
  • 1998, Sue Butler, Lonely Planet Australian Phrasebook: Language Survival Kit
    Other important languages of Victoria include Wathawurrung, spoken near Geelong, Wembe-Wemba of the Mallee region, Bunganditj from the south-west corner of Victoria, and Muk Thang, the language of the Ganai (also spelled Kurnai) of Gippsland.
  • 2002, R. M. W. Dixon, Australian Languages: Their Nature and Development
    I have in most cases avoided names which appear to have been invented by White observers but had no validity for Aborigines in traditional times. For example, ‘Kurnay’ or ‘Gaanay’ (from the lexeme ‘man’) for the Gippsland language; I have preferred to label the language ‘Muk-thang’, the name of one of its dialects.

Further reading[edit]

Ethnologue report on the Pama-Nyungan languages